When I started my now ten-year journey down the “let’s teach computer science in our public schools” path, I knew that getting students to instruct machines would open up new methods of teaching and learning. But I did not understand just how powerful that would be.
It is good and necessary to offer dedicated classes in computer science to students. It is even better to use computer science to teach complex concepts in subjects like math, science, art, music, literature and more. When you do both, you can really impact student’s learning and comprehension.
They started with a lesson on the translation function and how it could be used to move objects around. This is a photo I took of the smartboard at the front of the classroom as the students discussed how this function works.
Writing and editing code on a machine allows the student to see how geometric functions (and many other functions) work in a fun and interactive way and takes complex notions and makes them real and tangible to them. This is important and powerful.
I now believe that introducing computer science into the elementary, middle, and high school curriculum will not only help students master computational thinking but it will also help them master many other complex concepts and allow them to be better students and better adults.